The Puppy Lemon Law

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Dog Purchaser Protection Act (The Puppy Lemon Law)

Dogs can be our dearest friends. That’s why the unwitting purchase of an unhealthy pet can be so devastating. In an effort to ensure that consumers buying a dog know their new pet has a clean bill of health. For example in Pennsylvania Dog sellers and breeders must now post a visible notice that informs consumers of their rights under the state’s Dog Purchaser Protection Act, also known as the “Puppy Lemon Law”.  Sellers and breeders must also provide a written copy of the consumer’s rights at the time of the sale.

These are the Laws of which the AKC is aware. All of them give dog purchasers the right to return a sick or dead puppy for a refund or replacement. Most also give consumers the option of retaining the puppy, having it treated and getting some level of reimbursement for veterinary expenses from the seller.

Puppy Lemon Laws have become more and more common as mall pet stores become more common. As dog lovers are thrilled to see more people enjoying the companionship of dogs, the demand has created an industry that has more than its share of problems. Puppy Lemon Laws are an effort to address some of these problems.

***Many new pet owners and consumers in general are still unaware of this law even though it was initially passed in 1987. Not all states uphold ‘The Dog Purchaser Protection Act’, but  many do. Check below to see if your state is listed.

Arkansas Law

This Law also applies to both cats and dogs, and stipulates registration of pet stores. Kennels are defined in a way that includes most hobby breeders therefore the law does not apply to them.

Pros: targeted at commercial establishments, so it does not effect hobby breeders

Cons: not all hobby breeders deserve to be unaffected.

  • Applies to: retail pet stores (any room or group of rooms, run, cage, compartment, exhibition pen, or tether; excludes kennels).
  • Contagious or Infectious Disease: 10 days
  • Congenital or Hereditary Defects: 10 days
  • Failure to Produced Advertised Registration Papers: no
  • Replacement: no
  • Refund: no
  • Reimbursement of Veterinary Expenses to Treat Dog: yes, up to the purchase price of the dog

California Law

This Law is the most hard on sellers of unhealthy dogs, but hobby breeders do not fall under its provisions except for the extremely active ones. As with the Florida Law, it is important to note that costs of testing to certify a dog unhealthy could double what a seller is obligated to refund to the purchaser. It is also important to note that this Law obligates the seller to cover 1½ times the purchase price of the dog in veterinary expenses should the purchaser elect to have the dog treated.

Pros: long period in which to find congenital or hereditary conditions

Update 4-6-2001 Pertains to anyone who sold, transferred, or given away two or more litters during the preceding calendar year.
See: AB 161

Cons: obligation to cover veterinary expenses above the purchase price of the dog may be considered punitive.

  • Applies to: any one who sells more than 50 dogs per year.
  • Contagious or Infectious Disease: 15 days
  • Congenital or Hereditary Defects: 1 year
  • Failure to Produced Advertised Registration Papers: yes, within 120 days, otherwise return dog for full refund or receive refund of 75% of purchase price if you keep the dog.
  • Replacement: yes, plus reimbursement for veterinary expenses related to certifying the dogs illness up to the price of the dog including sales tax.
  • Refund: yes, plus reimbursement for veterinary expenses related to certifying the dogs illness up to the price of the dog including sales tax.
  • Reimbursement of Veterinary Expenses to Treat Dog: yes, up to 150% of the purchase price of the dog plus sales tax.

Connecticut Law

This Law is very short and concise. The entire Act is on one sheet of paper. Unfortunately, this leaves some things open to interpretation, but it appears that this Law will not apply to most hobby breeders. As you can see by the following summary, this Law is not as far reaching as some of the others.

Pros: very concise and easy to understand; targeted at commercial stores.

Cons: does not allow for reimbursement if you want to keep the effected pet.

  • Applies to: pet shop licensee.
  • Contagious or Infectious Disease: 15 days
  • Congenital or Hereditary Defects: 15 days
  • Failure to Produced Advertised Registration Papers: no
  • Replacement: yes
  • Refund: yes
  • Reimbursement of Veterinary Expenses to Treat Dog: no

ß 22-344b. Pet shop required to have dogs and cats examined by veterinarian. Replacement or refund. Penalty.

(a) A pet shop licensee shall, prior to offering a dog or cat for sale and thereafter at intervals of fifteen days until such dog or cat is sold, provide for examination of such dog or cat by a veterinarian licensed under chapter 384. The licensee shall maintain a record of the veterinary services rendered for each dog or cat offered for sale.
(b) If, within fifteen days of sale, any such dog or cat becomes ill or dies of any illness which existed in such dog or cat at the time of the sale, such licensee shall, at the option of the consumer, replace the dog or cat or refund in full the purchase price of such dog or cat: (1) In the case of illness, upon return of the dog or cat to the pet shop and the receipt of a certificate from a veterinarian licensed under chapter 384, stating that the dog or cat is ill from a condition which existed at the time of sale, and (2) in the case of death, the receipt of a certificate from a veterinarian licensed under said chapter stating that the dog or cat died from an illness which existed at the time of sale. Any costs for services and medications provided by a licensed veterinarian incurred by the consumer for such illness shall be reimbursed to the consumer by such licensee in an amount not to exceed two hundred dollars. The presentation of such certificate shall be sufficient proof to claim reimbursement or replacement and the return of such deceased dog or cat to the pet shop shall not be required. No such refund or replacement shall be made if such illness or death resulted from maltreatment or neglect by a person other than the licensee, his agent or employee.
(c) A licensee who violates any provision of this section shall forfeit to the state a sum not to exceed five hundred dollars for each animal which is the subject of the violation. The Attorney General, upon complaint of the commissioner, may institute a civil action in the superior court for the judicial district of Hartford to recover the forfeiture specified in this section.

ß 22-344d. Signs required in pet shops selling dogs. Penalty.

(a) A sign measuring not less than three inches in height and not less than five inches in width shall be posted on the cage of each dog offered for sale in a pet shop. The sign shall contain information printed in black lettering on a white background listing the breed of such dog, the locality and state in which such dog was born, and any individual identification number of such dog as listed on the official certificate of veterinary inspection from the state of origin.
(b) A sign shall be posted stating the following “THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION IS ALWAYS AVAILABLE ON ALL OUR PUPPIES: DATE OF BIRTH, THE STATE OF BIRTH, BREED, SEX AND COLOR, THE DATE THE PET SHOP RECEIVED THE PUPPY, THE NAMES AND REGISTRATION NUMBERS OF THE PARENTS (FOR AKC REGISTERABLE PUPPIES), RECORD OF INOCULATIONS AND WORMING TREATMENTS AND ANY RECORD OF ANY VETERINARY TREATMENT OR MEDICATIONS RECEIVED TO DATE.” Such sign shall include a telephone number at the Department of Agriculture through which information may be obtained regarding complaints about diseased or disabled animals offered for sale. Such sign shall be posted in a place readily visible to the consumer where dogs are offered for sale and printed in black lettering not less than thirty-eight point size upon a white background.
(c) A licensee who violates any provision of this section shall be liable for a civil penalty not to exceed five hundred dollars. The Attorney General, upon complaint of the Commissioner of Agriculture, may institute a civil action in the superior court for the judicial district of Hartford to recover the penalty specified in this section.

ß 22-354. Imported dogs and cats. Health certificates. Importation from rabies quarantine area. Puppies and kittens. Sale of young puppies and kittens.

Any dog or cat imported into this state shall be accompanied by a certificate of health issued by a licensed, graduate veterinarian stating that such dog or cat is free from symptoms of any infectious, contagious or communicable disease, and that such dog or cat, if three months of age or older, is currently vaccinated for rabies by a licensed veterinarian. A copy of such health certificate shall be forwarded promptly to the commissioner from the livestock sanitary official of the state of origin. Any dog or cat originating from a rabies quarantine area must have permission of the State Veterinarian prior to importation into this state. No person, firm or corporation shall import or export for the purposes of sale or offering for sale any dog or cat under the age of eight weeks unless such dog or cat is transported with its dam and no person, firm or corporation shall sell within the state any dog or cat under the age of eight weeks. Any person, firm or corporation violating the provisions of this section or bringing any dog or cat into this state from an area under quarantine for rabies shall be fined not more than one hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days or both.


Florida Law

This Law applies to both cats and dogs, and it stipulates vaccinations and examinations for animals prior to sale. The definition of a pet dealer in this Law is explicitly written so as to include active hobby breeders. One important thing to note is the provisions for replacement and refund. Consider the scenario where a puppy is purchased for $150 and has its hips evaluated within 1 year. The x-rays could run up to $150. If they turn up definite hip dysplasia, the seller may have to provide either a refund or replacement, plus cover the $150 for the x-rays.

Pros: longer period for finding congenital and hereditary defects.

Cons: obligation to pay for diagnostic testing may double sellers liability.

  • Applies to: pet dealer (any one who sells more than 2 litters or 20 dogs per year, whichever is greater).
  • Contagious or Infectious Disease: 14 days
  • Congenital or Hereditary Defects: 1 year
  • Failure to Produced Advertised Registration Papers: no
  • Replacement: yes, plus reimbursement for veterinary expenses related to certifying the dogs illness up to the price of the dog.
  • Refund: yes, plus reimbursement for veterinary expenses related to certifying the dogs illness up to the price of the dog.
  • Reimbursement of Veterinary Expenses to Treat Dog: yes, up to the purchase price of the dog

828.29 Dogs and cats transported or offered for sale; health requirements; consumer guarantee.

(1) (a) For each dog transported into the state for sale, the tests, vaccines, and anthelmintics required by this section must be administered by or under the direction of a veterinarian, licensed by the state of origin and accredited by the United States Department of Agriculture, who issues the official certificate of veterinary inspection. The tests, vaccines, and anthelmintics must be administered no more than 30 days and no less than 14 days before the dog’s entry into the state. The official certificate of veterinary inspection certifying compliance with this section must accompany each dog transported into the state for sale.
(b) For each dog offered for sale within the state, the tests, vaccines, and anthelmintics required by this section must be administered by or under the direction of a veterinarian, licensed by the state and accredited by the United States Department of Agriculture, who issues the official certificate of veterinary inspection. The tests, vaccines, and anthelmintics must be administered before the dog is offered for sale in the state, unless the licensed, accredited veterinarian certifies on the official certificate of veterinary inspection that to inoculate or deworm the dog is not in the best medical interest of the dog, in which case the vaccine or anthelmintic may not be administered to that particular dog. Each dog must receive vaccines and anthelmintics against the following diseases and internal parasites:
1. Canine distemper.
2. Leptospirosis.
3. Bordetella (by intranasal inoculation or by an alternative method of administration if deemed necessary by the attending veterinarian and noted on the health certificate, which must be administered in this state once before sale).
4. Parainfluenza.
5. Hepatitis.
6. Canine parvo.
7. Rabies, provided the dog is over 3 months of age and the inoculation is administered by a licensed veterinarian.
8. Roundworms.
9. Hookworms.

If the dog is under 4 months of age, the tests, vaccines, and anthelmintics required by this section must be administered no more than 21 days before sale within the state. If the dog is 4 months of age or older, the tests, vaccines, and anthelmintics required by this section must be administered at or after 3 months of age, but no more than 1 year before sale within the state.
(2) (a) For each cat transported into the state for sale, the tests, vaccines, and anthelmintics required by this section must be administered by or under the direction of a veterinarian, licensed by the state of origin and accredited by the United States Department of Agriculture, who issues the official certificate of veterinary inspection. The tests, vaccines, and anthelmintics must be administered no more than 30 days and no less than 14 days before the cat’s entry into the state. The official certificate of veterinary inspection certifying compliance with this section must accompany each cat transported into the state for sale.
(b) For each cat offered for sale within the state, the tests, vaccines, and anthelmintics required by this section must be administered by or under the direction of a veterinarian, licensed by the state and accredited by the United States Department of Agriculture, who issues the official certificate of veterinary inspection. The tests, vaccines, and anthelmintics must be administered before the cat is offered for sale in the state, unless the licensed, accredited veterinarian certifies on the official certificate of veterinary inspection that to inoculate or deworm the cat is not in the best medical interest of the cat, in which case the vaccine or anthelmintic may not be administered to that particular cat. Each cat must receive vaccines and anthelmintics against the following diseases and internal parasites:
1. Panleukopenia.
2. Feline viral rhinotracheitis.
3. Calici virus.
4. Rabies, if the cat is over 3 months of age and the inoculation is administered by a licensed veterinarian.
5. Hookworms.
6. Roundworms.

If the cat is under 4 months of age, the tests, vaccines, and anthelmintics required by this section must be administered no more than 21 days before sale within the state. If the cat is 4 months of age or older, the tests, vaccines, and anthelmintics required by this section must be administered at or after 3 months of age, but no more than 1 year before sale within the state.
(3) (a) Each dog or cat subject to subsection (1) or subsection (2) must be accompanied by a current official certificate of veterinary inspection at all times while being offered for sale within the state. The examining veterinarian must retain one copy of the official certificate of veterinary inspection on file for at least 1 year after the date of examination. At the time of sale of the animal, one copy of the official certificate of veterinary inspection must be given to the buyer. The seller must retain one copy of the official certificate of veterinary inspection on record for at least 1 year after the date of sale.
(b) The term “official certificate of veterinary inspection” means a legible certificate of veterinary inspection signed by the examining veterinarian licensed by the state of origin and accredited by the United States Department of Agriculture, that shows the age, sex, breed, color, and health record of the dog or cat, the printed or typed names and addresses of the person or business from whom the animal was obtained, the consignor or seller, the consignee or purchaser, and the examining veterinarian, and the veterinarian’s license number. The official certificate of veterinary inspection must list all vaccines and deworming medications administered to the dog or cat, including the manufacturer, vaccine, type, lot number, expiration date, and the dates of administration thereof, and must state that the examining veterinarian warrants that, to the best of his or her knowledge, the animal has no sign of contagious or infectious diseases and has no evidence of internal or external parasites, including coccidiosis and ear mites, but excluding fleas and ticks. The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services shall supply the official intrastate certificate of veterinary inspection required by this section at cost.
(c) The examination of each dog and cat by a veterinarian must take place no more than 30 days before the sale within the state. The examination must include, but not be limited to, a fecal test to determine if the dog or cat is free of internal parasites, including hookworms, roundworms, tapeworms, and whipworms. If the examination warrants, the dog or cat must be treated with a specific anthelmintic. In the absence of a definitive parasitic diagnosis, each dog or cat must be given a broad spectrum anthelmintic. Each dog over 6 months of age must also be tested for heartworms. Each cat must also be tested for feline leukemia before being offered for sale in the state. All of these tests must be performed by or under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian, and the results of the tests must be listed on the official certificate of veterinary inspection.
(d) All dogs and cats offered for sale and copies of certificates held by the seller and veterinarian are subject to inspection by any agent of the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, any agent of the United States Department of Agriculture, any law enforcement officer, or any agent appointed under s. 828.03.
(4) A person may not transport into the state for sale or offer for sale within the state any dog or cat that is less than 8 weeks of age.
(5) If, within 14 days following the sale by a pet dealer of an animal subject to this section, a licensed veterinarian of the consumer’s choosing certifies that, at the time of the sale, the animal was unfit for purchase due to illness or disease, the presence of symptoms of a contagious or infectious disease, or the presence of internal or external parasites, excluding fleas and ticks; or if, within 1 year following the sale of an animal subject to this section, a licensed veterinarian of the consumer’s choosing certifies such animal to be unfit for purchase due to a congenital or hereditary disorder which adversely affects the health of the animal; or if, within 1 year following the sale of an animal subject to this section, the breed, sex, or health of such animal is found to have been misrepresented to the consumer, the pet dealer shall afford the consumer the right to choose one of the following options:
(a) The right to return the animal and receive a refund of the purchase price, including the sales tax, and reimbursement for reasonable veterinary costs directly related to the veterinarian’s examination and certification that the dog or cat is unfit for purchase pursuant to this section and directly related to necessary emergency services and treatment undertaken to relieve suffering;
(b) The right to return the animal and receive an exchange dog or cat of the consumer’s choice of equivalent value, and reimbursement for reasonable veterinary costs directly related to the veterinarian’s examination and certification that the dog or cat is unfit for purchase pursuant to this section and directly related to necessary emergency services and treatment undertaken to relieve suffering; or
(c) The right to retain the animal and receive reimbursement for reasonable veterinary costs for necessary services and treatment related to the attempt to cure or curing of the dog or cat.

Reimbursement for veterinary costs may not exceed the purchase price of the animal. The cost of veterinary services is reasonable if comparable to the cost of similar services rendered by other licensed veterinarians in proximity to the treating veterinarian and the services rendered are appropriate for the certification by the veterinarian.
(6) A consumer may sign a waiver relinquishing his or her right to return the dog or cat for congenital or hereditary disorders. In the case of such waiver, the consumer has 48 normal business hours, excluding weekends and holidays, in which to have the animal examined by a licensed veterinarian of the consumer’s choosing. If the veterinarian certifies that, at the time of sale, the dog or cat was unfit for purchase due to a congenital or hereditary disorder, the pet dealer must afford the consumer the right to choose one of the following options:
(a) The right to return the animal and receive a refund of the purchase price, including sales tax, but excluding the veterinary costs related to the certification that the dog or cat is unfit; or
(b) The right to return the animal and receive an exchange dog or cat of the consumer’s choice of equivalent value, but not a refund of the veterinary costs related to the certification that the dog or cat is unfit.
(7) A pet dealer may specifically state at the time of sale, in writing to the consumer, the presence of specific congenital or hereditary disorders, in which case the consumer has no right to any refund or exchange for those disorders.
(8) The refund or exchange required by subsection (5) or subsection (6) shall be made by the pet dealer not later than 10 business days following receipt of a signed veterinary certification as required in subsection (5) or subsection (6). The consumer must notify the pet dealer within 2 business days after the veterinarian’s determination that the animal is unfit. The written certification of unfitness must be presented to the pet dealer not later than 3 business days following receipt thereof by the consumer.
(9) An animal may not be determined unfit for sale on account of an injury sustained or illness contracted after the consumer takes possession of the animal. A veterinary finding of intestinal or external parasites is not grounds for declaring a dog or cat unfit for sale unless the animal is clinically ill because of that condition.
(10) If a pet dealer wishes to contest a demand for veterinary expenses, refund, or exchange made by a consumer under this section, the dealer may require the consumer to produce the animal for examination by a licensed veterinarian designated by the dealer. Upon such examination, if the consumer and the dealer are unable to reach an agreement that constitutes one of the options set forth in subsection (5) or subsection (6) within 10 business days following receipt of the animal for such examination, the consumer may initiate an action in a court of competent jurisdiction to recover or obtain reimbursement of veterinary expenses, refund, or exchange.
(11) This section does not in any way limit the rights or remedies that are otherwise available to a consumer under any other law.
(12) Every pet dealer who sells an animal to a consumer must provide the consumer at the time of sale with a written notice, printed or typed, which reads as follows:

It is the consumer’s right, pursuant to section 828.29, Florida Statutes, to receive a certificate of veterinary inspection with each dog or cat purchased from a pet dealer. Such certificate shall list all vaccines and deworming medications administered to the animal and shall state that the animal has been examined by a Florida-licensed veterinarian who certifies that, to the best of the veterinarian’s knowledge, the animal was found to have been healthy at the time of the veterinary examination. In the event that the consumer purchases the animal and finds it to have been unfit for purchase as provided in section 828.29(5), Florida Statutes, the consumer must notify the pet dealer within 2 business days of the veterinarian’s determination that the animal was unfit. The consumer has the right to retain, return, or exchange the animal and receive reimbursement for certain related veterinary services rendered to the animal, subject to the right of the dealer to have the animal examined by another veterinarian.
(13) For the purposes of subsections (5)-(12) and (16), the term “pet dealer” means any person, firm, partnership, corporation, or other association which, in the ordinary course of business, engages in the sale of more than two litters, or 20 dogs or cats, per year, whichever is greater, to the public. This definition includes breeders of animals who sell such animals directly to a consumer.
(14) The state attorney may bring an action to enjoin any violator of this section or s. 828.12 or s. 828.13 from being a pet dealer.
(15) County-operated or city-operated animal control agencies and registered nonprofit humane organizations are exempt from this section.
(16) A pet dealer may not knowingly misrepresent the breed, sex, or health of any dog or cat offered for sale within the state.
(17) Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, a person who violates any provision of this section commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.


Minnesota Law

This Law should apply to anyone who sells a puppy, but many backyard breeders selling dogs through the classifieds are unaware of their responsibilities. Minnesota pure-bred dog clubs are trying to educate the public of their rights and obligations under this Law. It is interesting to note that this Law pertains to cats also.

Pros: applies to all sellers of puppies, including back yard breeders.

Cons: back yard breeders are unaware of their obligations and do not make buyers aware of their rights.

  • Applies to: pet dealers (any person, firm, etc., including breeders, that is required to collect state sales tax for the sale of animals to the public).
  • Contagious or Infectious Disease: 10 days
  • Congenital or Hereditary Defects: 1 year
  • Failure to Produced Advertised Registration Papers: within 90 days, otherwise keep the animal and receive a refund 50% of purchase price, or return the animal for a full refund.
  • Replacement: yes
  • Refund: yes
  • Reimbursement of Veterinary Expenses to Treat Dog: yes, up to the purchase price of the animal

Massachusetts Law

This Law is actually entitled “Operation and Licensing of Pet Shops” so it does not apply to most hobby breeders. It does have provisions similar to the Puppy Lemon Laws of the other states, so it is included here.

Pros: does not effect most hobby breeders

Cons: does not effect back yard breeders, time period to find congenital problems too short.

  • Applies to: pet shop licensee.
  • Contagious or Infectious Disease: 14 days
  • Congenital or Hereditary Defects: 14 days
  • Failure to Produced Advertised Registration Papers: no
  • Replacement: yes
  • Refund: yes
  • Reimbursement of Veterinary Expenses to Treat Dog: no

New Jersey Law

Most hobby breeders do not regard their activities as “for profit”, but in the eyes of the law, they probably are. The only ones exempt by this definition would probably be SPCAs and Humane Societies.

Pros: reasonable period for finding congenital problems; very inclusive.

Cons: covering veterinary expenses for diagnostic tests might double to obligation for the seller.

  • Applies to: pet dealer (any person engaged in the sale of animals for profit to the public).
  • Contagious or Infectious Disease: 14 days
  • Congenital or Hereditary Defects: 6 months
  • Failure to Produced Advertised Registration Papers: yes within 120 days otherwise receive full refund or keep the dog and receive a refund of 75% of the purchase price.
  • Replacement: yes plus the cost of veterinary fees to certify the dog as unfit for purchase.
  • Refund: yes plus the cost of veterinary fees to certify the dog as unfit for purchase.
  • Reimbursement of Veterinary Expenses to Treat Dog: yes, up to the purchase price of the dog.

Free Puppy Lemon Law Help – PA and NJ


New York Law

Since the number of pet sales necessary to fall within the definition of a “pet dealer” is fairly low, a lot of hobby breeders in N.Y. will have to know this Law. This Law does apply to both cats and dogs.

Pros: effects only very active hobby breeders

Cons: covering veterinary expenses for diagnostic tests might double the obligation for the seller.

  • Applies to: pet dealer (any one who engages in the sale of more than 9 animals per year).
  • Contagious or Infectious Disease: 14 days
  • Congenital or Hereditary Defects: 14 days
  • Failure to Produced Advertised Registration Papers: no
  • Replacement: yes plus the cost of veterinary fees to certify the dog as unfit for purchase up to the purchase price of the dog.
  • Refund: yes plus the cost of veterinary fees to certify the dog as unfit for purchase up to the purchase price of the dog.
  • Reimbursement of Veterinary Expenses to Treat Dog: yes, up to the purchase price of the dog.

Every pet dealer in New York who sells an animal to a consumer shall post a notice clearly visible to the consumer and provide the consumer at the time of sale with a written notice, printed or typed, setting forth the rights provided under this article. Such notices shall be prescribed by the commissioner, but the written notice may be contained in a written contract, an animal history certificate or separate document, provided such notices are in ten-point boldface type. More…..


Pennsylvania Law (effective August 26, 1997)

The PA Federation of Dogs Clubs has been working for more than 6 years to get this proposal enacted, but has met stiff opposition from organized commercial kennels. Many compromises have had to been made including the length of time in which problems can be found and the fact that the proposal will only apply to licensed kennels. Obviously this allows uneducated backyard breeders off the hook despite their contributions to the problem of ill-bred puppies.

Pros: brings accountability to a state with far more than its share of commercial kennels (i.e. puppy mills).

Cons: time limit to find hereditary or congenital problems too short, made necessary by political power of commercial kennels.

  • Applies to: licensed kennels (anyone handling more than 26 dogs in a year is required to be licensed).
  • Contagious or Infectious Disease: 10 days
  • Congenital or Hereditary Defects: 30 days
  • Failure to Produced Advertised Registration Papers: within 120 days or refund 50% of purchase price
  • Replacement: yes
  • Refund: yes, excluding sales tax
  • Reimbursement of Veterinary Expenses to Treat Dog: yes, up to the purchase price of the dog excluding sales tax

PENNSYLVANIA updatePuppy Lemon Law Public Notice

This notice shall be conspicuously posted in the place of business of persons subject to this section as enforced by the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General. This disclosure of rights is a summary of Pennsylvania Law.A written notice setting forth the rights provided under Section 9.3 of the Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law shall be provided to you at the time of the sale. A civil penalty of up to $1,000 shall be levied for each violation in addition to any other penalty under this act.

1. A seller shall provide you with a health record for the dog at the time of sale. The health record must contain information as required by the Law. 2. The seller shall provide a health certificate issued by a veterinarian within 21 days prior to the date of sale OR a guarantee of good health issued and signed by the seller. The health certificate and the guarantee of good health must contain information as required by the Law.

3. To preserve your rights under the Law, you must take your newly purchased dog to a licensed veterinarian for examination within 10 days of purchase. If a veterinarian determines, within 10 days of purchase, that your dog is clinically ill or has died from an injury sustained or illness likely to have been contracted on or before the date of sale and delivery, you have the following options:

(a) Return the dog for a complete refund; (b) Return the dog for a replacement dog of equal value; OR (c) Retain the dog and receive reimbursement for reasonable veterinary fees, not exceeding the purchase price.These options do not apply where a seller, who has provided a health certificate issued by a veterinarian, discloses in writing at the time of sale the health problem for which the buyer later seeks to return the dog.

4. If, within 30 days of purchase, a licensed veterinarian determines that your dog has a congenital or hereditary defect which adversely affects the animal’s health or that your dog died from a congenital or hereditary defect, you have the same options as outlined in Section 3 (above).

5. Within 2 business days of a veterinarian’s certification of your dog’s illness, defect or death, you must notify the seller of the name, address and telephone number of the examining veterinarian. Failure to notify the seller within 2 business days will result in forfeiture of rights.

6. Refunds or reimbursements shall be made no later than 14 days after the seller receives the veterinarian certification. Veterinarian certification shall be presented to the seller not later than 5 days after you receive it.

7. Registerable Dogs — If the seller does not provide within 120 days all documentation to effect registration,you may exercise one of the following options:
(a) Return the dog and receive a full refund of the purchase price; OR (b) Retain the dog and receive a 50% refund of the purchase price.

8. If registerable, the seller shall provide at the time of sale: the breeder’s name and address, the name and registration number of the dam and sire, and the name and address of the pedigree registry organization where the dam and sire are registered.

For further information concerning your rights under Section 9.3 of the Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law contact:

Pennsylvania Office Attorney General
Mike Fisher
Consumer Protection Hotline

1-800-441-2555


South Carolina Law

The definition of a breeder here seems to eliminate backyard breeders, but active hobby breeders may be considered “for profit” in the eyes of the Law.

Pros: reasonable period for finding congenital defects.

Cons: obscure definition for “pet breeder”, unclear to whom it applies.

  • Applies to: pet dealer, shop or breeder (does not include a person who owns an animal which is occasionally bred or produces a litter from which animals are sold).
  • Contagious or Infectious Disease: 14 days
  • Congenital or Hereditary Defects: 6 months
  • Failure to Produced Advertised Registration Papers: no
  • Replacement: yes plus the cost of veterinary fees to certify the dog as unfit for purchase up to 50% of the purchase price.
  • Refund: yes plus the cost of veterinary fees to certify the dog as unfit for purchase up to 50% of the purchase price.
  • Reimbursement of Veterinary Expenses to Treat Dog: yes, up to 50% of the purchase price of the dog.

Virginia Law

The Law is unclear to whom this Law applies. Effectively, it is being applied to anyone who sells a puppy. Several breeders in Virginia were unaware of the Law or were not sure if it applied to them. It is important to note that the Virginia Law only applies to dogs that are registered or are capable of being registered with any animal registry organization.

Pros: does not appear to apply to hobby breeders.

Cons: short period in which to find congenital or hereditary defects.

  • Applies to: pet dealer
  • Contagious or Infectious Disease: 10 days
  • Congenital or Hereditary Defects: 10 days
  • Failure to Produced Advertised Registration Papers: yes within 120 days otherwise receive full refund or keep the dog and receive a refund of 50% of the purchase price.
  • Replacement: yes
  • Refund: yes
  • Reimbursement of Veterinary Expenses to Treat Dog: yes, up to 50% of the purchase price of the dog (beyond certifying the dog unfit for sale, no veterinary receipts for treatment required).

Vermont Law

This Law also contains the provisions that require the seller to cover the costs of testing for defects. If a defect is found, the seller may be liable for double the purchase price of the dog.

Pros: reasonable period in which to find congenital or hereditary defects.

Cons: applies to everyone except backyard breeders.

  • Applies to: pet dealer (any one who engages in the sale of more than 1 litter or 2 animals over six months of age per year).
  • Contagious or Infectious Disease: 7 days
  • Congenital or Hereditary Defects: 1 year
  • Failure to Produced Advertised Registration Papers: no
  • Replacement: yes plus the cost of veterinary fees to certify the dog as unfit for purchase up to the purchase price of the dog.
  • Refund: yes plus the cost of veterinary fees to certify the dog as unfit for purchase up to the purchase price of the dog.
  • Reimbursement of Veterinary Expenses to Treat Dog: yes, up to the purchase price of the dog.
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FDA Seizes Contaminated Heparin from a Cincinnati Manufacturer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 6, 2008

Media Inquiries:
Karen Riley, 301-827-6244
Consumer Inquiries:
888-INFO-FDA

FDA Seizes Contaminated Heparin from a Cincinnati Manufacturer

As part of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s ongoing efforts to ensure that heparin for patients remains safe, the government today seized 11 lots of heparin from Celsus Laboratories Inc. in Cincinnati, Ohio.

The five lots of Heparin Sodium Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API) and six lots of Heparin Lithium were seized at the FDA’s request by U.S. Marshals. These products, which were manufactured from material imported from China, had been found by the agency to be contaminated with over-sulfated chondroitin sulfate (OSCS), a substance that mimics heparin’s anticoagulant activity.

“This action will help prevent this contaminated heparin from finding its way into the marketplace,” said Mike Chappell, acting associate commissioner for regulatory affairs, FDA.

Heparin is a blood-thinning drug. An API is a substance or mixture of substances that, when delivered in a finished drug product, directly affects the structure or function of the body. Heparin Sodium USP is an API that may be incorporated into finished drug products. Heparin Lithium is used in certain medical devices including vacutainer blood collection tubes, some in vitro diagnostic assays, and as a coating for capillary tubes. Celsus has distributed Heparin Sodium USP and Heparin Lithium to manufacturers in both the United States and abroad.

OSCS contaminant in injectable drug products containing heparin has been linked to multiple adverse events and deaths initially reported to the FDA in January 2008. Since then, the FDA has put in place a comprehensive inspection and import controls program and has acted to remove from the market heparin materials and products contaminated with OSCS. The seized Celsus heparin – which had entered the United States before the establishment of import controls for the drug – was tested for the presence of OSCS as part of this FDA effort.

To date, the agency has initiated 13 recalls of multiple contaminated medical products containing heparin from several companies.

The FDA informed Celsus Laboratories during an April 2008 inspection and again in a May 8, 2008, letter that the company’s actions to notify customers about a contaminant in its heparin were insufficient to assure an effective recall. The agency advises manufacturers who may have purchased heparin from Celsus to contact the company to make certain they are not using any heparin from the seized lots because the product does not meet acceptable quality standards.

The FDA has notified Japanese, Canadian, Australian, European Union, and other international authorities of shipments of contaminated heparin from Celsus.


Uses/Indications – Heparin’s primary uses in small animal medicine include treatment of Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation (DIC), and treatment of thromboembolic disease. In horses, it has also been used in the treatment of DIC and as prophylactic therapy for laminitis (unproven efficacy).


Heparin Sodium For Veterinary Use
By Barbara Forney VMD

Overview

Therapeutic Class
Parenteral anticoagulant

Species
Dogs, cats and horses

Commonly prescribed by vets for:
Catheter maintenance, thrombo-embolic disease.

FDA Status
No veterinary approved products.

Basic Information

Heparin is a naturally occurring glycosaminoglycan that is found in mast cells. Most commercially available heparin is manufactured from porcine or bovine origin. Heparin’s mechanism of action is on both the extrinsic and intrinsic coagulation pathways. It does not significantly change the concentration of clotting factors, but rather blocks the clotting pathways. Heparin will not dissolve an existing clot. Heparin does not cross the placenta and is used with caution during pregnancy when the benefits of anticoagulation are felt to outweigh the risks. The FDA classifies it as a class C drug.
Heparin must be given either intravenously or subcutaneously. It is not absorbed orally and should not be given intra-muscularly due to hematoma formation. With the exception of IV catheter maintenance, most heparin use is in animals with serious medical problems and will require close supervision and hematologic monitoring.

Dogs and Cats, and Horses

Heparin is used in a variety of medical conditions where there is excessive clotting or increased risk of clot formation. These may include thromboembolic disease, pancreatitis, laminitis, endotoxic shock and burns. It is also commonly used for the maintenance of intravenous catheters. Heparin was commonly used in the treatment of disseminated intravascular coagulopathy, but that use is becoming controversial.

Side Effects

• Bleeding and thrombocytopenia

• Hypersensitivity reaction may occur due to the foreign protein.

• Numerous rare side effects include decreased kidney function, osteoporosis, vascular spasm, electrolyte abnormalities, hyperlipidemia.

Precautions

• Heparin should not be used in animals with severe thrombocytopenia, those that are actively bleeding, or have uncontrollable bleeding.

• There is wide variability in the response to heparin and a wide range of recommended doses. Regular monitoring of clotting function is important particularly during the early stages of treatment.

Drug Interactions

• Heparin should be used with caution when used with other drugs that affect coagulation such as NSAIDs, aspirin and wafarin.

• Heparin may reduce the effects of corticosteroids, insulin and ACTH.

• Antihistamines, nitroglycerin, digoxin and tetracycline may decrease the effects of heparin.

Overdose

• Heparin overdose is associated with bleeding. Before frank bleeding occurs, subtler symptoms may include bruising, petechiaie and blood in the urine or stool. Protamine is the drug of choice for heparin toxicity. Protamine will bind with heparin and neutralize the anti-thrombin effects within five minutes of intravenous injection.

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Hartz Chicken-Basted Rawhide Chips-RECALL-10-20-08

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Recall — Firm Press Release

FDA posts press releases and other notices of recalls and market withdrawals from the firms involved as a service to consumers, the media, and other interested parties. FDA does not endorse either the product or the company.

The Hartz Mountain Corporation Voluntarily Recalls One Specific Lot of Nationwide Chicken-Basted Rawhide Chips Because of Possible Health Risk

Contact:
John Mullane
(914) 712 9150

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — October 20, 2008 — The Hartz Mountain Corporation, Secaucus, NJ is voluntarily recalling one specific lot of Hartz Chicken-Basted Rawhide Chips due to concerns that one or more bags within the lot are potentially contaminated with Salmonella. Hartz is fully cooperating with the US Food and Drug Administration in this voluntary recall.

Salmonella can cause serious infections in dogs, and, if there is cross-contamination caused by handling of the rawhide chips, in people as well, especially children, the aged, and people with compromised immune systems. Healthy people potentially infected with Salmonella should monitor themselves for some or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever. On rare occasions, Salmonella can result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation, and urinary tract symptoms. Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with this product should contact their healthcare providers.

Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Animals can be carriers with no visible symptoms and can potentially infect other animals or humans. If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.

The product involved is 4,850 – 2 pound plastic bags of Hartz Chicken-Basted Rawhide Chips, lot code JC23282, UPC number 3270096463 which were distributed to a national retail customer. While the normal testing that Hartz conducts through an independent outside laboratory did not detect the presence of Salmonella in any Hartz rawhide products, sample testing conducted by another laboratory did indicate the presence of the bacteria in a sample bag of the Chicken-Basted Rawhide Chips. Hartz is aggressively investigating the difference in test results and the potential source of the problem.

Although Hartz has not received any reports of animals or humans becoming ill as a result of coming into contact with this product, Hartz is taking immediate steps to remove the product from all retail stores and distribution centers. Dog owners who purchased this product should check the lot code on their bag, and, if the code is not visible, or if the bag has lot code JC23282 imprinted thereon, they should immediately discontinue use of the product and discard it in a proper manner.

Consumers can contact Hartz at 1-800-275-1414 with any questions they may have and to obtain reimbursement for purchased product.

A dog’s tribute to Sarah Palin

Boycott Iams

Shelters, Veterinarians, and Retail Stores Boycott Iams

Showing a groundswell of support for the boycott of Iams products, over 100 animal shelters, veterinarians, and companion-animal supply stores have severed their ties with Iams.

The 96 shelters, 34 veterinary clinics, and 36 retail stores across the United States, Canada, and Australia are joining PETA’s boycott of Iams products because Iams confines animals to cages to conduct cruel laboratory tests on them.

(To view a list of some of the animal shelters that are taking a stand against Iams, click here.)

While giant retailers and wealthy groups like the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) have decided to profit from Iams’ abuse of animals, these shelters, vet clinics, and stores are refusing to benefit from cruelty to animals. They are insisting that Iams end its laboratory tests on animals and instead rely on humane feeding tests conducted in homes and in veterinary offices using animals volunteered by their guardians.

Many of the shelters, vet clinics, and stores that have joined the boycott have written letters to Iams CEO Jeffery Ansell telling him that they will not purchase, sell, or promote Iams products and are informing their clients and customers about Iams’ cruel laboratory tests on animals as well.

Dangerous Substances To Dogs

  • Animal feces. Dogs occasionally eat their own feces, or the feces of other dogs and other species if available, such as cats, deer, cows, or horses. This is known as coprophagia. Some dogs develop preferences for one type over another. There is no definitive reason known, although boredom, hunger, and nutritional needs have been suggested. Eating cat feces is common, possibly because of the high protein content of cat food. Dogs eating cat feces from a litter box may lead to Toxoplasmosis. Dogs seem to have different preferences in relation to eating feces. Some are attracted to the stools of deer, cows, or horses.[54]

  • Other risks. Human medications may be toxic to dogs, for example paracetamol/acetaminophen (Tylenol). Zinc toxicity, mostly in the form of the ingestion of US cents minted after 1982, is commonly fatal in dogs where it causes a severe hemolytic anemia.

7 Things You Didn’t Know About The Humane Society

7 Things You Didn’t Know About H$U$

(The Humane Society of the United States)

1. H$U$ does not operate or have direct control over any animal shelter. Buried deep within H$U$’s website is a disclaimer noting that the group “is not affiliated with, nor is it a parent organization for, local humane societies, animal shelters, or animal care and control agencies.” When H$U$ merged with the Fund for Animals they acquired some animal sanctuaries but those are usually full when someone tries to send an animal there – unless the animal comes with a big check.

2. Since its inception, H$U$ has tried to limit the choices of American consumers, opposing dog breeding, conventional livestock and poultry farming, rodeos, circuses, horse racing, marine aquariums, fur trapping and medical research.

3. H$U$ raises enough money to help finance animal shelters in every single state, with money to spare, yet it doesn’t operate a single one anywhere. Instead, H$U$ spends millions on programs that seek to economically cripple meat and dairy producers; eliminate the use of animals in biomedical research labs; phase out pet breeding, zoos, and circus animal acts; and demonize hunters as crazed lunatics. H$U$ spends $2 million each year on travel expenses alone, just keeping its multi-national agenda going.

4. While most local animal shelters are under-funded and unsung, H$U$ has accumulated $113 million in assets and built a recognizable brand by capitalizing on the confusion its very name provokes.

5. The current president of H$U$, Wayne Pacelle, is a former officer of PeTA.

6. H$U$ is currently under investigation by the Attorney General of Louisiana in regards to the disposition of Katrina funds. H$U$ has been under investigation by the FBI for their links to domestic terrorist organizations such as the Animal Liberation Front (ALF). One of their current officers, John P. Goodwin is a former member of ALF and a convicted felon for acts of terrorism related to animals.

7. H$U$ consistently jumps on the bandwagon of any animal issue to raise funds even if they are NOT directly involved. Most recently they used the Michael Vick case as a major fund raiser, even though H$U$ had nothing to do with the investigation or care of the Vick dogs.

Sources: